FORT WORTH, Texas–Pier 1 Imports finished fiscal year 2010 with net income of $34.5 million for the fourth quarter and $86.8 million for the year, reversing losses of $29.4 million and $129.3 million, respectively, for the fourth quarter and fiscal year of 2009.
The specialty retailer managed this turnaround through a combination of increases in net sales and gross margin, and cuts in expenses. Fourth-quarter net sales edged up 1.7 percent to $396 million, while gross margin in the quarter rose by a whopping 1,276 basis points to 38.92 percent. Selling, general and administrative expenses were cut by 7.2 percent.
For fiscal 2010 as a whole, Pier 1’s net sales declined by 2.2 percent to $1.3 billion—which the company attributed to a net store reduction of 38 locations.
Commenting on Pier 1’s three-year “journey to return our company to profitability,” Alex Smith, president and chief executive officer, said, “It has long been apparent that we can control costs and expand merchandise margin. Now with a slightly more active economy, we are starting to see top-line improvements, which we knew would come eventually.”